Commercial Photography and Filming
COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPHY AND FILMING AT CABRILLO NATIONAL MONUMENT
Because of its scenic location, Cabrillo National Monument is frequently sought after by filmmakers and photographers. Look closely on television programs, movies, and in catalogs: you may recognize the lighthouse, tidepool area, or other park features as a backdrop for actors and models. The National Park Service allows commercial filming and photography within the National Park System to the fullest extent possible consistent with the protection of the park resources and the visitor's enjoyment of the park.
Commercial filming is defined as digital or film recording of a visual image or sound recording by a person, business, or other entity for a market audience, such as for a documentary, television or feature film, advertisement, or similar project. Under Public Law 106-206, all commercial filming requires a permit and is subject to a location fee and cost recovery.
The decision to require a permit for still photography activities in a park is based on the activity itself as opposed to the eventual use of the image. Generally, permits are not required for still photography activities unless:
If none of these conditions exist, a permit is not required.
In Public Law 106-206, Congress expressed the importance of resource protection and provided that the permit request should be denied if:
Approved permits will include appropriate terms and conditions to protect the resources, ensure public health and safety, and prevent unreasonable disruption of the public's use and enjoyment. Permits will also include a hold harmless clause, liability insurance, and a bond, if deemed necessary.
News coverage does not require a permit, for either filming or still photography, but is subject to time, place, and manner restrictions, if warranted, to maintain order and ensure the safety of the public and the media, and protect natural and cultural resources.
All commercial filming permits and still photography permits are statutorily subject to cost recovery and a location fee, neither of which may be waived. The location fee is determined by the type of activity (commercial filming versus still photography) and is determined by the number of permitted days and the number of people on park lands associated with the permitted activity. There is no deviation from the schedule. A day is defined as a continuous 24 hour period.
LOCATION FEES FOR MOTION PICTURES/VIDEOS
LOCATION FEES FOR COMMERCIAL STILL PHOTOGRAPHY
To address the needs of videographers and cinematographers who produce nature films highlighting the wonders of national parks, the following provision is in effect:
Commercial videographers, cinematographers, or sound recording crews of up to two people with only minimal equipment (i.e., a camera and a tripod) working in areas open to the public are required to obtain a commercial filming permit and are subject to appropriate permit terms and conditions and cost recovery charges but are not subject to location fees.
DOWNLOAD AN APPLICATION
To download the short form Application for Commercial Filming/Still Photography Permit, click here. A short form application is used for small scale shoots: still photography, minimal set-up and equipment, and short in duration.
To download the long form Application for Commercial Filming/Still Photography Permit, click here. A long form is used for more elaborate shoots: feature films, television series, extensive logistics and equipment.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
To obtain a Commercial Film/Photography Worksheet, or for more information, please contact:
Did You Know?
Did you know that Cabrillo National Monument boasts one of the best harbor views in the world? On clear winter days, you can experience a panorama that stretches from Mexico to the snow-capped mountains east of Los Angeles.